Blog of the International Journal of Constitutional Law

What’s New in Comparative Public Law

–Rohan Alva, Advocate, New Delhi

In this weekly feature, I-CONnect publishes a curated reading list of developments in comparative public law. “Developments” may include a selection of links to news, high court decisions, new or recent scholarly books and articles, and blog posts from around the comparative public law blogosphere.

To submit relevant developments for our weekly feature on “What’s New in Comparative Public Law,” please email

Developments in Constitutional Courts 

  1. The U.S. Supreme Court declined to entertain a challenge to the Affordable Care Act that was premised on the claim that the legislation contravened the Origination Clause of the U.S. Constitution.
  2. A Constitution Bench of the Indian Supreme Court permitted an individual convicted in the “Red Fort Attack” in New Delhi to seek review of a death sentence.
  3. Zimbabwe’s Constitutional Court declared that persons who have not attained the age of 18 cannot marry.
  4. The Indian Supreme Court noted that it is the Union Government that possesses primacy in granting “minority status” to educational institutions.
  5. Italy’s Constitutional Court decided to permit a national referendum on the duration of oil and gas drilling concessions in the country.

In the News

  1. The United Nations Human Rights Committee announced that Peru has agreed to compensate a woman who was unlawfully denied access to abortion.
  2. U.S. President Barack Obama vetoed a congressional resolution that sought a withdrawal of the Waters of the United States Rule, which had enlarged the waters falling within the jurisdiction of the Environmental Protection Agency.
  3. In an effort to combat acid attacks, Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos enacted legislation to punish them strictly.
  4. The Egyptian Parliament passed legislation that allows law enforcement officers to use stringent measures to tackle terrorism.
  5. A Commonwealth Observer Group released a report recommending that Sri Lanka take steps to enhance women’s representation in Parliament.

New Scholarship

  1. Manoj Mate, India’s Participatory Model: The Right to Information in Election Law, 48 George Washington International Law Review (forthcoming) (evaluating the importance of the right to information in election law in creating an informed citizenry in India and explaining the lessons that the model holds for other countries)
  2. Philip Alston and Sarah Knuckey (eds.), The Transformation of Human Rights Fact-Finding (2016) (examining from a cross disciplinary perspective the importance of fact-finding for human rights studies)
  3. Jamie Cameron, Law, Politics, and Legacy Building at the McLachlin Court in 2014, 71 Supreme Court Law Review (2015) (assessing the broader impact of the leading decisions delivered by the Supreme Court of Canada under the leadership of Chief Justice McLachlin)
  4. Christopher Manfredi, Conservatives, the Supreme Court, and the Constitution: Judicial-Government Relations, 2006-15, 52 Osgoode Hall Law Journal (2015) (analyzing Canadian Supreme Court decisions and arguing that the relationship between the Conservative government and the Court from 2006 to 2015 was much more complicated than the “fractious relationship” narrative would suggest)
  5. Bianca Selejan Gutan, Informal Constitutional Changes in Romania, Romanian Journal of Comparative Law (2015) (examining the distinction between a formal and an informal transformation of constitutional law and assessing the informal factors that have played a key part in transforming Romanian constitutional law)
  6. Nadjma Yassari, Adding by Choice: Adoption and Functional Equivalents in Islamic and Middle Eastern Law, 63 American Journal of Comparative Law 927 (2015) (arguing that the current state of opinion on adoption under Islamic law is based on a comparative analysis that fails to consider the changing nature and variety of adoption laws worldwide)
  7. Antonios E. Platsas, Enhancing the Cosmopolitan Element in the Law Curriculum: The Lessons of Comparative Law, in Legal Theory, Practice and Education (2016) (highlighting the fact that the subject of comparative law provides the basis for a cosmopolitan legal education)

Calls for Papers

  1. Organizers invite papers for the “Iceland Summit on International Law & Human Rights, 2016: Developing Initiatives to Implement Human Rights Legislation” to be held in Reykjavik, Iceland on April 27-29, 2016. The President of Iceland, and the Prime Minister of Iceland will be speaking at the Summit.
  2. Organizers have issued a call for papers for “The Legal Scholarship Workshop,” to be held at the Hong Kong University on May 26-27, 2016. Abstracts of papers should be submitted by March 6, 2016.
  3. The Human Rights Centre at Universidad de Chile invites papers for the 7th International Conference on Human Rights Education on “Addressing the Challenges of the Civil Society,” to be held at the Faculty of Law, University of Chile, on December 12-15, 2016. Paper proposals should be submitted by June 30, 2016.
  4. Consortium for Social Research on Turkey along with the Center for Policy and Research on Turkey and the Student Collective of Turkey are organizing a one-day conference on “Constitutional Politics in Turkey” at the New School for Social Research, New York on March 4, 2016. Interested participants are invited to submit abstracts of papers, which should be submitted by February 5, 2016.
  5. The ILS Law College invites papers for a conference on “Dialectics and Dynamics of Interface of Public Law in India” to be held on January 30-31, 2016.

Elsewhere on the Internet

  1. Virginia Mantouvalou, A Right to Change Employer for Overseas Domestic Workers, Oxford Human Rights Hub
  2. The Editorial Board, An Important Win in the Supreme Court for Class Actions, New York Times
  3. Trevor Timm, Journalism is not terrorism. Criticism of the government is not violence, The Guardian
  4. Ronald Mann, Opinion Analysis: Justices reaffirm limitations on ERISA plan’s right to recover medical-reimbursement costs, SCOTUSBlog
  5. Jacob Gershman, Immigration Case Latest Chapter of Congress v. Obama Saga, The Wall Street Journal Law Blog
  6. Pacifique Manirakiza,The Genocide Rhetoric in Burundi, JURIST
  7. Shawn Marie Boyne, Keeping an Arm’s Length, Comparative Law Prof Blog


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